Two prosecutors in the trial of Officer Terrance Stangel: Assistant District Attorneys Hans Moore (left) and Rebecca Young (right).

Lead District Attorney prosecutor Hans Moore requested a new court date today in the case against SFPD Officer Terrance Stangel, angering the judge who presided over Stangel’s acquittal.

“Don’t you think it’s time to move forward?” asked a visibly irritated San Francisco Superior Court Judge Teresa M. Caffese before a nearly empty courtroom, the day after the highly anticipated jury verdict was announced. Stangel was not present.

Yesterday afternoon, Stangel was acquitted of three counts of assault and battery for beating domestic violence suspect Dacari Spiers with a baton in 2019. The jury was hung on the final charge, for assault under the color of authority. The trial, believed to be the first in which an on-duty police officer faced a jury for excessive force, lasted more than four weeks.

Moore told the court that the District Attorney’s office is “still evaluating how to move forward” — whether to dismiss the final charge against Stangel, or to retry him.

“It would be appropriate for the People to seriously consider whether it’s to anyone’s benefit,” Caffese said, adding that the money to hold another court session could be better spent elsewhere. “But if that’s what the state, the government wants, then that’s what we’ll do.”

Stangel’s defense attorney, Nicole Pifari, asked the judge to reject the DA’s request for a future court date, claiming a waste of public funds and accusing prosecutors of not accepting the jury’s decision.

SFPD Officer Terrance Stangel leaves the courtroom with his attorney and family, hours before the jury acquitted him on Monday of three of four charges he faced. Photo by Eleni Balakrishnan

Three out of 12 jurors voted to convict Stangel on the fourth charge, that he misused his authority. Since the jury could not come to a consensus on that charge, the judge declared a mistrial on it yesterday.

Moore’s fellow prosecutor, Rebecca Young, said Monday that some jurors felt there was reasonable doubt about whether Stangel abused his authority as a police officer, since SFPD body camera footage shows him putting away his baton after getting ahold of Spiers’ legs.

Although the DA’s office has the option to retry Stangel, Caffese pushed for the DA to do “the responsible thing” and dismiss the last charge. “We know it’s going to ultimately be dismissed,” she said.

But Moore told Mission Local that the DA’s office is “not in a position right now to make that determination; there are still matters to be evaluated. And that’s what we intend to do.”

The court secretary offered to set a court date in 60 days, but Caffese, apparently wanting to speed up the process, interjected and asked to set the date for tomorrow, March 9.

As she left the courtroom, Pifari told her colleagues that the judge was “pissed, as she should be.”

Prosecutors are not required to decide their next move by tomorrow, and could choose to further delay the decision whether to retry Stangel or dismiss the last charge against him.

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REPORTER. Eleni is our reporter focused on policing in San Francisco. She first moved to the city on a whim over eight years ago, and the Mission has become her home. Follow her on Twitter @miss_elenius.

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16 Comments

  1. Stangel should be barred from any public service that requires proper judgement and exercise of self restraint.
    The point is he went too far. And despite having other officers around to help. He made a snap judgement to harm another person.

  2. Clearly this judge, who is Berkeley educated and a former public defender is a Trump and thin blue line loving, white nationalist who was biased. Oh, she’s a lesbian too? (Not that it matters, but it always does for some people.) Probably also a secret Putin plant. Absolutely can’t be the incompetent DA pissing off another liberal judge.

  3. This radical progressive liberal DA will face SF voters in just a few months. Too much Asian hate crimes, too many broken cars, many black ppl shot. SF needs more help from a real DA.

  4. “Judge Rips DA” should just be a standing headline for all SF news outlets. It seems like Boudin’s office can’t help but piss off SF judges, who are largely considered liberal and progressive in their own right. The reason is simple: no matter what their political or social leanings, judges despise incompetence.

  5. Chesa Boudin’s vendetta against the police because of his dad’s incarceration. Can’t accept reality and jury decision.

  6. Campers,

    Drop this case already, boy wonder.

    Let go of that nice man’s cashmere topcoat, lead hound!

    Lose that insulting ‘Johnny Cochran suit’ prosecutor!

    Put away the flares and sparklers and crepe paper.

    Don’t shoot a flea with a friggin’ bazooka on remaining ‘color of authority’ charge.

    This is a long slog that has lasted over 1,500 years on cash bail alone.

    Corralling thugs who work for the King and His Men?

    That’s a work in progress for a million years.

    No bells and whistles or trophies just for getting to the big game.

    Your victory was just getting us there for the first time.

    Enjoy your win to those who think this means thuggery is cool again.

    It ain’t.

    Go Niners!

    h.

  7. And, furthermore …

    Allow me to jump on coattails other than Hennessey’s, ‘Elect our Top Cop’ platform.

    You wanna make certain that Stangel or any cops like him don’t end up in court at your expense again?

    Require the POA pay for Liability Insurance against such, ‘frivolous’ lawsuits for, in the case of a young guy like Terry Stangel who is likely to run into this same kinda situation again a thousand times over the next 30 years?

    Let’s get a policy of a million a year just for him.

    Hell, we already paid out almost a million on him this year.

    And, he won!!

    Go Giants!

    h.

  8. Campers,

    Look upon Chesa as manager of a team of 100 or so lawyers like a baseball team only they have 25,000 games.

    You send your best lawyers to take the tough cases or, like Gonzalez and Adachi, you take them yourself.

    I’d like to see Chesa in a trial.

    Doesn’t Matter:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3GIUWft1Xg&t=722s

    That’s what lawyering looks like.

    And, I worship at the twin altars of Gonzo and Boudin, so I’m very very prejudiced cause I really like to watch smart people doing good while bad people try to stop them.

    Go Giants!

    h.

  9. A lot of media outlets are just not having comment threads anymore. Maybe it’s for the best. It’s a different Internet now.

    1. CJ,

      Yeah, I still communicate mostly by email now too cause my fingers somehow got old and phone keyboards …

      I just write too long uh comments I’ve been told.

      Building my own site to kinda have my short-wave set in my kids garage kinda thing.

      Visit it at some combination of SF Bulldog and h. brown blog and some stuff.

      First photo is an accidental double nude exposure …

      then, it goes downhill

      lol

      Go Giants!

      h.

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